1. This forum section is a read-only archive which contains old newsgroup posts. If you wish to post a query, please do so in one of our main forum sections (here). This way you will get a faster, better response from the members on Motherboard Point.

24 bit framebuffer for SS20?

Discussion in 'Sun Hardware' started by Lasse Jensen, May 26, 2004.

  1. Lasse Jensen

    Lasse Jensen Guest

    I looking for a 24 bit framebuffer for my SS20. It have to be supported by
    Solaris 8 or 9 and Linux, and 2D speed is more importent than 3D, whats the
    best choice?
    Lasse Jensen, May 26, 2004
    1. Advertisements

  2. Get a VSIMM from ebay for the ss20 to activate the onbaord framebuffer,
    which is 24bit, and the only one that is supported on solaris 8 and 9
    without using driveres from earlier solaris releases as hack.

    Barbie - Prayers are like junkmail for Jesus

    I have seen things you lusers would not believe.
    I've seen Sun monitors on fire off the side of the multimedia lab.
    I've seen NTU lights glitter in the dark near the Mail Gate.
    All these things will be lost in time, like the root partition last
    week. Time to die.
    Barbie LeVile, May 26, 2004
    1. Advertisements

  3. Lasse Jensen

    neoholistic Guest

    x-no-archive: yes

    I'd forget about Linux, if that means using XFree86 (and I don't know of any other X server for Linux/SPARC). To my knowledge, the only 24-bit SBUS framebuffer it supports is the ZX which is far too slow for 2D.

    On Solaris, on the other hand, and assuming you're using its built-in X server, you have several choices for 24-bit framebuffers:

    * The SS20 on-board CG14/SX: you need the 8 MB VSIMM to activate it. It supports hw image processing/video via XIL on Solaris 2.3 up to 2.5.1 - now obsolete; it also supports 3D acceleration (but not too fast) via XGL, up to Solaris 8 (also obsolete). As a regular 2D framebuffer, it's not fast but it's usually "usable".

    * The MGX Plus: Fast 2D. Works very well under Solaris 8.

    * Parallax XVIDEO/POWERVIDEO: these are 24-bit framebuffers + video grabbers. I don't know how fast they are nor whether they are supported under Solaris 8/9.

    * RasterFlex 32/HR: these are very fast (for their time) 2D framebuffers. They work very well under Solaris 8 using the drivers for 2.6.

    * Fujitsu AG10-E: this is a very fast (for its time) 3D accelerator that also has very good 2D performance. It works very well up to Solaris 9 using the drivers for 2.6. It includes its own drivers for OpenGL, so you get 3D acceleration on both libraries (XGL and OpenGL). It was a very high-end adaptor and has hardware texture mapping.

    * Integrix F10E: this is a clon of the above.

    * Sun ZX/TZX: these are 3D accelerators; slow for 2D in 8-bit mode, and VERY slow for 2D in 24-bit mode. 3D accel is only available for the obsolete XGL libs unless you buy a propietary version of OpenGL.
    Not recommended: 3D speed isn't great and they generate a LOT of heat. They work on Solaris 7 using the drivers for 2.6.

    * Sun GS: very old and very slow 3D accelerator. I'm not even sure it works on the SS20. They aren't supported on Solaris 2.5 and up.

    There are probably more, but that's all the info I have at the moment.
    neoholistic, May 26, 2004
  4. In theory the SX framebuffer should work with Linux, but I
    couldn't get it to work very recently when I tried to install
    Debian on my SS20. All in all the whole thing was very
    unstable. Right now, I wouldn't recommend running Linux on
    a 32bit SPARC. I tried different kernel revisions on both an
    SS10 and an SS20 and neither ran stable. Both machines just
    died without any sound frequently. I'm quite disappointed
    since these things used to work perfectly in the past
    with Linux.
    I guess most SPARCLinux users have UltraSPARCs these days...
    Oh, that was no 2.6 kernel, but later 2.4 kernels.
    I think support for 32bit SPARC is broken in 2.6 at the
    moment too. Pretty sad IMHO as I am really a Linux fan
    and this is very nice hardware.
    Running Solaris on such a box is a bit boring if you
    have faster SPARCs that already run Solaris :-(

    Dennis Grevenstein, May 26, 2004
  5. Lasse Jensen

    Tauno Voipio Guest

    Your SS20 might be ill.

    I've been running a SS20 with Linux for a couple of years
    H24 (24h / day) as a router / firewall / server without
    a hitch. The current kernel is 2.4.21 with Debian Woody.

    Tauno Voipio
    tauno voipio @ iki fi
    Tauno Voipio, May 26, 2004
  6. [snip]
    You are just lucky - the entire 2.4.x series is badly broken for
    pre-ultra machines. Maybe you are just not using any of the broken bits.

    Most of the problems have been fixed in 2.6.x, but this is an ongoing
    process. I would suggest staying with 2.2.x for a while longer.

    Splack 8.0 still uses 2.2 and works OK, Splack-current will not have a
    kernel until the 2.6 stabilises.
    Chris Newport, May 26, 2004
  7. Lasse Jensen

    Andre Guest

    [snip list of framebuffers]

    Excellent. Now, that is a useful chunk of information. There is not
    much mention around of framebuffers other than those made/sold by Sun, and
    you've actually provided something useful here. Cheers.
    Andre, May 27, 2004
  8. Lasse Jensen

    neoholistic Guest

    x-no-archive: yes
    I think I'd better clarify this: the cg14/sx (the fb built-in onto the
    SS20 motherboard) IS supported under XFree86, but only in 8-bit mode and
    as a dumb framebuffer (no acceleration). It's more than fast enough,
    though, at least with a 75 MHz CPU; it just doesn't support 24-bit visuals.

    In my experience, most software running on both Linux and OpenBSD on my
    SS20 (SuperSPARC CPU) was a lot slower than on Solaris, mostly in the
    floating point department (GIMP, Fortran, etc). I'm told you can
    build/download a version of libc and libm optimised for the SPARC V8
    instruction set (the default is V7) and that doing so improves things. I
    haven't tried this myself, so YMMV.
    neoholistic, May 27, 2004
  9. No it isn't.
    As I said before. Linux used to work perfectly in the past.

    Dennis Grevenstein, May 27, 2004
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.